COVID-19 REMOTE LEARNING Provision – Information for parents/carers
This information is intended to provide clarity and transparency to students and parents / carers about what to expect from remote learning education where national or local restrictions require students or entire bubbles to remain at home.
The remote curriculum: What is taught to students at home?
What should my child expect from immediate remote education in the first day or two of students being sent home?
The student’s first few days of accessing remote learning may look quite different from the classroom approach. These first few days has been a learning curve for us all as we get used to delivering lessons in this way as well as managing the software. Students and parents have also found this new way of working to be quite a challenge but it seems that we are all getting to grips with it now. The good thing is that if there is a problem with the work or the technical side of things help is always on hand as we are just a phone call away. We are aware that remote learning may be with us for some considerable period of time so we are improving our offer all the time.
We teach the same curriculum remotely as we teach face 2 face in school. The remote learning lessons follow as closely the lessons that would be taught to that child in school, with the occasional adaptation. Work can be accessed on line by each student signing into Google Classroom and Google Meet with their specific login. However work books and work packs are also sent home, as this allows students to work independently and we need to be mindful that a student may not be able to access the computer all the time, especially if there are other children at home or a parent working from home. Art equipment is supplied by school to support the remote learning.
Remote teaching and study time each day
How long can I expect work set by the school to take my child each day?
We expect that remote education (including remote online teaching and independent work) will take students roughly the following number of hours each day:
Key Stage 3 and Key Stage 4- 4 hours or a little longer.
However teachers and parents need to adopt a flexible approach, especially when dealing with students with SEN. Some days they can work better, stay on task longer and avoid distraction and other days it is much more challenging.
Accessing remote education
How will my child access any online remote education the school are providing?
If my child does not have digital or online access at home, how will you support them to access remote education?
We are using Google Classroom and Google Meet as our main digital platforms. Each student has been coached initially in how to login and access the site and parents /carers have been given a step by step guide to support their child with access. Google Classroom is accessible to the students constantly and is a continuous on line platform where work is posted and students can access at any time. Google Meet is used for online teacher led lessons. The teacher will invite the student on to the site and there is a timetable in place so students know what their lessons are for the week.
Work is delivered by the teacher and students can discuss their work with the teacher online. Students are reminded before the lesson to have any equipment to hand and also to manage their behaviour so that they are not impacting on valuable teaching time. Students that are being rude or disrespectful towards staff or students will be “muted” and if it continues will be removed from the site. Following the lesson work can be submitted online to the teacher. The school is well aware of the disadvantage to students of not being online, and has been trying to source lap tops or tablets for students who do not have them. Some Local Authorities have provided lap tops for their students in the understanding that they will need to engage in remote learning at some time during this pandemic. For those students that do not possess a lap top or tablet the school sends home packs of work that follows the same curriculum content as is taught on line or face to face. Teachers encourage students to return work that has been completed at home so it can be marked and feedback given.
How will my child be taught remotely?
When students login to remote teaching they may be faced with a number of different approaches. There will be live teaching- where the teacher is delivering online lessons, to a number of students who can speak to the teacher as well as interact with each other.
They may also see recorded lessons and teaching these may be video or video clips or sequences that are linked to specific subject material such as science and humanities, as well as Oak National Academy lessons, BBC bite size clips and lessons, YouTube episodes as well as some audio recording. In many cases the student will also have printed packs that they can access whether they are working on line or independently. These may be their workbooks as well as work sheets or their sketch books.
Students will be encouraged to read at home and a lot of the work that they do involves students reading, researching topics and investigating items that are needed for their class coursework or further study.
Engagement and Feedback
What are the schools expectations for my child’s engagement and the support that parents and carers should provide at home?
Each student will be issued with a remote learning time table. This sets out the days and time when the student can access remote learning on line led by a teacher. A register is kept as to who is engaging in on line learning and the students interaction and feedback. It is expected that students will engage in online learning and staff will phone students up to remind them the day before of their lessons and if they have not logged on for their lesson then staff will call home to make enquires. Students that are having technical problems can call into the school as there is always a technical support team on hand to sort out any problems that a student or parent may have.
Students respond best when there are routines in place that support not only learning and accessing the curriculum but also supports the students mental health needs too. Students were used to getting up and getting ready for school, and if these routines can be maintained in the home it helps the child to maintain their purpose. If the student was in the habit of taking medication at a certain time before school it helps to continue with this as this supports the child and also imposes some normality on their life. The school sends to all parents/ carers the time table for face 2 face learning as well as a time table for remote learning. It is recommended that the time tables are placed in a prominent position in the home, and parent / carer reminds the child the night before of the time of the online lessons, as well as getting their uniform ready if they are attending school that day for face 2 face learning and ensuring that their child has two masks.
How will you check whether my child is engaging with their work and how will I be informed if there are concerns?
Students’ engagement with remote learning will be checked on a lesson by lesson basis. We know who is expected to engage in a lesson and if they do not engage we will be calling home to ask if everything is alright or is they are having difficulties. Students that engage are awarded merits and those that do not have an absent mark. Parents of online learners are spoken to by tutors on a daily basis. Parents/carers are made aware straight away that their child is not engaged and is not accessing remote learning. All parents are spoken to at least three times a week to discuss their child’s online engagement as well as their engagement in face 2 face learning and to ensure that there are no concerns or anxieties with the work or the arrangements.
How will you assess my child’s work and progress?
Feedback can take many forms. Work that a student has submitted will be marked, comments made and a grade or level given. We aim to mark work and give feed back during the day and certainly by the next day. There may be whole class progress checks and feed back sessions such as a quiz or question and answer sessions. Work can be marked digitally, and results and feedback is instantaneous. All these methods are valid and effective and allows the teacher and the student to have a clear understanding as to what is required and when they have achieved it.
Support for students with particular needs
How will you work with me to help my child who may need additional support from adults at home to access remote education?
We understand that some of our students will not be able to access remote education without support from adults at home. We acknowledge the difficulties that this may place on families, the school will always work with parents and carers to support these students. We know that students with SEN do not cope well with change, and working at home in the middle of a pandemic is not what they are used to and in some cases they are hostile to these arrangements. Students and families need to be treated with care, patience and consideration; parents are being asked to become teachers as well as coping with child care issues and financial burdens. In some cases there is little space and computer pressures if there are other students working at home.
On line learning can become very exciting as students are now connecting with their friends; teachers have to balance the work planned for the online learning lesson with the need for the students to connect with others. Teachers have to be sympathetic to this but must always maintain control in what could be a difficult situation. It must never be forgotten that some students and parents do not want others to see them in their home, and in these situations students and parents are encouraged to use only audio. The lessons themselves are carefully differentiated and designed to be accessible to all. They are presented in small bite sized tasks that are not too demanding and stressful for the student, as it must be remembered that a student with SEN can become upset and their mood change dramatically; we would not want to be the cause of an argument in the home especially where a student is not able to remove themselves from the situation. This could put people at risk.
Remote education for self-isolating students
If my child is not in school because they are self-isolating how will their remote education differ from the approaches described above?
Where individual students need to self-isolate, they will always be able to access the work as outlined above, however it may be that while they are self-isolating they are accessing it with other students that they may not usually work with, whether online remotely or in school accessing face 2 face learning. Students will follow a differentiated well sequenced curriculum that will follow the same curriculum as that taught to other students face 2 face or remotely. It is important that teachers provide regular feedback for those self-isolating so that they are able to return to their usual way of working whether face 2 face or online remotely.
January 21st 2021